This is a word you had better learn.

Entropy is the conveyor belt your business is built on. It is moving backwards all the time. It never stops.

So, if you are improving things at your business just a little—a little better service, a little product improvement—then, maybe, you are standing still because maybe you are keeping pace with the backward pull of entropy. Maybe.

If you are coasting, waiting out this recession, then you are going backwards and don’t know it. Entropy will take down many businesses this year. Entropy killed GM. Entropy can take you down too. Entropy got Circuit City too. Funny thing. I wrote the CEO of Circuit City over a year ago and told him that their entire chain was going to fail if they did not immediately move to improve service. Oh well. 

Businesses frantically moving forward with improvements are staying ahead of entropy. Those businesses will survive.

Are you moving fast enough to stay ahead of entropy? We’ll know if you’re still in business a year from now.

Chris Reich, Author of TeachU’s Business Talk Blog
[email protected]